Monday, February 21, 2011

Read, Know, Grow: Support School Libraries

Some time ago, I donated a piece of my art from my book A Panda's World to help support school libraries. It has now been incorporated into the California Campaign for Strong School Libraries. Visit the Campaign’s Library Store and see how you can buy a t-shirt, mug and other items with great art (mine or someone else's) AND support school libraries! (I've already ordered a bunch of t-shirts and mugs!) Great for gifts or for yourself!

The Campaign is a public awareness program aimed at publicizing today’s role of school libraries and shining a spotlight on the new Model School Library Standards approved by the State Board of Education last fall. The standards include: 1) Standards for Students that delineate what students should know and be able to do at each grade level or grade span to enable students to succeed in school, higher education and the workforce, and; 2) base level staffing, resources and infrastructure, including technology, required for effective school library programs for students.

Patrick Nelson, CEO of California-based bookseller Mrs. Nelson’s Toy & Book Shop, used his vast network of contacts with authors and illustrators to facilitate the arrangement with the California School Library Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that oversees the Campaign. Last year, Nelson was recognized by the California School Library Association for his role in creating and developing a statewide school library advocacy campaign. For more information about the Campaign or the Campaign’s LIBRARY STORE, contact Connie Williams at

Friday, February 4, 2011

School Visit Tip

Recently, I was asked by my friend Alexis O'Neill to contribute a tip for doing school visits for her blog School Visit Here's my tip: Create coloring pages, activity sheets, and other “hands on” projects that can be downloaded from your website and used in the classroom to build up knowledge and interest in your books before or after your visit. Include this information in a packet sent to the librarian before your visit. I love going to schools and see walls of cut paper zebras created from the template on the web page for my book A Zebra’s World. No two zebra’s are ever alike!
In the photo above you can see the wonderful zebra mural made by the students in my brother's third grade class in Novato, CA. I love the way they created a whole African scene.
If you are an author or illustrator, check out the many other useful tips and resources on the School Visit Experts site.